MAYOLET + VUILLERMIN [mah-you-lay] + [voo-lehr-meen]
Mayolet dates back to the 18th century in Alto Adige, making it one of the region’s oldest known grapes, with around 1,200 acres planted today. It can make outstanding wine that is light to medium bodied and uniquely refined and aromatic, projecting strong notes of spice, purple flowers, blue/black fruits and white pepper. However, Mayolet is thin-skinned and has tightly packed bunches that are susceptible to botrytis, so growers often describe it as “a nightmare in the vineyard” and avoid growing it altogether. In addition to making svelte monovarietal wine, it sometimes plays a minor role in the fuller-bodied blends of Torrette, which benefit aromatically from a slathering of Mayo.
Vuillermin was saved from near extinction in the late 20th century and its resistance to sunburn makes it a good natural fit in the high and exposed Aosta Valley. Thought to be an offspring of Mayolet, Vuillermin shares a similar aromatic profile but with thicker skins and more tannic structure.